2. A small scouting
party of "Cherokee Negroes," led by a soldier named John Six-Killer, was ordered
to get windward of the fire, but to remain within sight of camp. (John Six-Killer was a
Cherokee Indian who had brought 5 of his slaves to Captain Seamans recruiting
station from the Cherokee Nation. At Mound City, John and his slaves enlisted in the same
company together.) Once the threat of the prairie fire passed and vision to the south
improved, Six-Killers scouting party was nowhere in sight. After Six-Killer and his
men managed to get safely windward of the fire, they began skirmishing with some rebels.
Instead of remaining in sight of camp, as ordered, the scouting party pursued the rebels
beyond the mounds immediately to the south of the Toothman farm. Hearing the sounds of
gunfire to his south, Captain Seaman dispatched Lt. Gardner with a detachment to locate
the scouting party and return them to camp. Captain Pierson accompanied Gardner as the
"Cherokee Negroes" were described as being somewhat difficult to handle, except
by their own officers.